American Animals is a unique piece of cinema. Blending the documentary with drama, it comes from Bart Layton, the director behind The Imposter, and stars Barry Keoghan in the leading role. To celebrate the film’s release we sat down with the talented duo.

We asked Layton about the genesis of the project and if it was always his intention to blend this film with the documentary format, and whether he, as a filmmaker, now visualises real life stories on cinematic terms.

Keoghan discusses why the leading cast lived with each other before the shoot, and how helpful that experience was, and when he recalls that moment of clarity where he felt like he could consider himself to be an actor, and the luxury that comes with that; to be able to pick and choose projects. Layton then finishes by discussing his next project, and why he’s decided to turn now to a full on drama in his next endeavour.

Watch the full interview below:


Spencer Reinhard, Warren Lipka, Eric Borsuk and Chas Allen are four friends who live an ordinary existence in Kentucky. After a visit to Transylvania University, Lipka comes up with the idea to steal the rarest and most valuable books from the school’s library. As one of the most audacious art heists in U.S. history starts to unfold, the men question whether their attempts to inject excitement and purpose into their lives are simply misguided attempts at achieving the American dream.

American Animals is released on September 7th